Colville boys stumble on final weekend of NEA play
Indians will host Riverside in loser-outAfter getting a busy week started on the right sneaker with a big road win at Lakeside, the Colville High boy’s basketball team saw opportunity slip through their grasp last weekend at home.The Indians (11-9, 6-4) were outplayed by NEA champion Freeman (13-7, 8-2) and by second place Chewelah (15-5, 7-3) on Saturday.On Friday, in front of the biggest crowd of the season, the Indians had no answers for Freeman’s quickness, three-point shooting and defensive pressure, losing to the Scotties, 53-35. On Saturday, visiting Chewelah rolled to a 13-6 first quarter lead and the Indians never really could recover in a 50-44 loss that handed the Cougars outright second place in the NEA and a first-round bye.DISTRICT 7 TOURNEYColville will host Riverside (4-16, 0-10) on Friday night in a District 7 1A Tournament loser-out game. Game time is 6:30 p.m.In the other loser-out first round action, NEA No. 5 Lakeside (9-11, 4-6) will travel to NEA No. 4 Newport (11-9, 5-5). That game is also scheduled for a 6:30 p.m. start.NEA regular season champion Freeman (13-7, 8-2) and second place Chewelah get byes into the second round and avoid the loser-out pressure cooker.The survivors of the Colville vs. Riverside and Lakeside vs. Newport games will advance to the tournament’s second round (double elimination) Wednesday, Feb. 8 at Mead High School.Winner of Colville vs. Riverside will get ChewelahThe Riverside vs. Colville winner will play Chewelah at 3:30 p.m. on Feb. 8 at Mead. The Lakeside vs. Newport survivor will play Freeman at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 8 at Mead.The double-elimination tournament proper will continue on Friday, Feb. 10 back at Mead with the winner of the Chewelah vs. game one survivor playing at 6:30 p.m. vs. the Freeman vs. game three winner. At 3:30 p.m. on Feb. 10, the two losers of Feb. 8 games will square off at Mead High (loser-out). Three teams from the NEA will advance to the Bi-District playoffs against the Caribou-Trail League. The loser-out portion of that tournament starts on Tuesday, Feb. 14 at Moses Lake High School. The survivors will advance to the double elimination portion of the tournament Feb. 17-18 at Chelan High School. Three teams will advance from the District 6-7 Bi-District to the regional tournament.LAST WEEKIn the final week of NEA play, Freeman asserted itself by going 3-0 and annexing the NEA title in the process. The Scotties started the week with a 70-47 rout of winless Riverside at home and followed that up with their decisive win at Colville on Friday and a 50-35 win over Lakeside on Saturday.In the win at Nine Mile Falls on Saturday, Kellen Miller led FHS with 20 points and five steals. Indians have trouble defending the three-point lineIn Friday’s win at Colville, Miller had 21 points and seven assists. Cody Unfred added 17 points and five three-pointers.Harter was the man all week for Freeman, scoring 24 points in the win over Riverside. He pulled down 11 rebounds.Chewelah was upset 57-52 at Newport last Tuesday. Jake Wiley scored 10 of his game-high 24 points in the second half.Derek Smith and Caleb Wiebe led Chewelah with 12 points apiece.But Chewelah rebounded to post a win at Colville and a 63-35 rout of Riverside back home on Friday night.Chewelah post Andrew Pugh turned in the biggest night of his career with 19 points, 10 rebounds and 10 blocked shots in the Riverside win.COLVILLE RECAPColville got their week started off solidly with a 55-45 win over Lakeside last Tuesday night.Trailing 11-6 after the first quarter, the Indians outscored Lakeside 19-9 in the second quarter.The Indians continued their strong play in the second half, holding the Eagles to 25 points.Colville’s 6-9 post, Matt Hubbard, led Colville with 19 points and 20 rebounds. That 20-rebound total is one off the school record the sophomore tied last week.J.R. Henry added 17 points and eight rebounds. The 6-6 senior also had three steals.Alex Pond added 11 points, eight rebounds and four assists. Senior point guard Taylor Murto had two points, six assists and only two turnovers.Colville was 18 of 49 from the field (37 percent) and four of 15 from three-point distance. The Indians were 15 of 24 at the free throw line.Lakeside was 16 of 64 from the field and six of 21 from distance. The Eagles were seven of 14 at the line.Colville pretty much hit its season average for turnovers (19). Lakeside turned the ball over 13 times.Colville won the board battle, 50-36. Both teams pulled down 11 offensive rebounds.No flow on either side of the ball for ColvilleIn Friday’s loss to frenetic Freeman, Colville simply couldn’t get into their offensive sets consistently because of the pressure the Scotties exerted on Colville’s guards.“That was a style of play we didn’t see much the first time at Freeman,” CHS head coach John Foulkes said of the Scotties’ defensive tactics against the Indians and their inexperienced guards.“We just weren’t able to execute our game plan very well,” Foulkes said, adding that he takes part of the blame for that.“Nothing seemed to work…we couldn’t run our offense—Freeman didn’t let us do that with their pressure on our guards. We just didn’t seem to be as prepared as I thought we were…a lot of it was an experience issue on our part.“We just didn’t handle adversity well against Freeman or Chewelah one night later. We have to be better than that and be able to handle (pressure more effectively).”While Foulkes’ acknowledged that his mostly inexperienced team played better one night later against Chewelah, part of that might be because the Cougars don’t tend to exert the defensive pressure that Freeman does.“I thought that our inexperience in playoff-type games showed (last weekend),” Foulkes said. “We kind of lost our composure at times. “Those were must-win games and we just weren’t at our best when our best was needed.”While the learning curve has a short-turnaround this week, Foulkes hopes his team can learn from the weekend losses.“I really think we’ll be able to do that,” he said.Colville simply didn’t shoot it well enough from the field or at the free throw line to beat a team as sound as Freeman.Colville got only 36 shots against Freeman and hit a season-low 10 (28 percent). The Indians were a poor 15 of 29 at the free throw line.Hubbard led Colville with 17 points and 12 rebounds.The Indians committed 19 turnovers. Freeman had only five against decidedly less pressure.‘The real deal’Freeman got up 58 shots and hit 18 from two-point range. The real offensive difference-maker was the Scotties’ seven of 18 work from distance. “Freeman played great,” Foulkes said. “They are the real deal. Their kids can all shoot it, they are aggressive and pretty quick.”Against Chewelah, one statistic was particularly telling. Colville managed only five of 11 from the free throw line. Chewelah, more aggressive at getting to the stripe, was 16 of 25, including some unerring marksmanship down the stretch when the game was on the line.Once again, Colville didn’t take very good care of the ball, committing 20 turnovers. Twelve of those were in the first half. Six more came at crunch time in the fourth quarter.“I thought the experience of their kids kind of came through there,” Foulkes said. “We just weren’t able to meet the moment.”Chewelah also seemed to be able to come up with a key offensive rebound or 50/50 ball when they needed it.Colville was 19 of 40 from the field (48 percent) and only one of eight from three-point distance.Chewelah was 15 of 46 from the field and four of 16 from distance.Hubbard led Colville with 13 points and 17 rebounds. Pond added 12 points and seven rebounds against Chewelah. Henry added nine points and six rebounds. THIS WEEKA split of last weekend’s games would have given Colville second place in the NEA and have avoided the first round loser-out game. But that didn’t happen and now the Indians will face a Riverside team that hasn’t been playing particularly well, but always plays CHS tough.“Riverside certainly won’t be feeling any pressure,” Foulkes said. “And we are going to have to learn quickly how to play more effectively and efficiently with some pressure on us.”CHS 55, Lakeside 45CHS 6 19 18 12— 55LHS 11 9 16 9-- 45Colville—Pond 11, Hubbard 19, Khater 0, Shoemaker 1, Murto 2, L. Holling 2, T. Holling 3, Henry 17, Vaagen 0, Lee 0.Lakeside—Powell 7,Moffatt 9, Watkins 11, Perkins 2, De. Watson 2, Wood 5, Widman 3.Freeman 53, Colville 35FHS 12 17 18 6— 53 CHS 9 12 8 6— 35Freeman—Miller 21, Fish 3, C. Unfred 17, Harter 4, VanderLinden 8.Colville—Hubbard 17, Pond 6, Henry 7, Shoemaker 0, Murto 3, L. Holling 0, T. Holling 0, Vaagen 0, Lee 2, Sprague 0, Khater 0.Chewelah 50, Colville 44Chew. 13 12 9 16-- 50CHS 6 14 10 14—44Chewelah—D. Smith 10, B. Smith 13, Johnstone 12, Pugh 6, Long 2, Wiebe 5, Monasmith 2.Colville—Shoemaker 2, Murto 4, T. Holling 0, L. Holling 2, Lee 2, Vaagen 0, Henry 9, Sprague 0, Khater 0, Pond 12, Hubbard 13.